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Miswak Chewstick: A Natural Toothbrush

March 11, 2017

 

 

History & Benefits

 

The Miswak, also known as a chewstick, is derived from the Salvadora persica tree, also referred to as the Arak Tree. It has been used since ancient times  by Afrikans, Arabs, Romans, and Greeks as a natural alternative to the modern toothbrush. The Miswak twigs are usually taken from the root of the plant, but occasionally they are taken from the branches. There are several advantages associated with this form of toothbrushing. These benefits include:

  • Antibacterial properties

  • Inhibiting dry mouth 

  • Keeping plaque at bay

  • Preventing Gingivitis

  • Promoting white teeth

  • Preventing and halting tooth decay

  • Eliminating tooth ache and bad breath

  • Improving sensitivity of taste-buds

  • Promoting cleaner teeth

The Miswak effectively cleans between teeth given the nature of its bristles; furthermore it has been found to contain naturally occurring fluorine as well as Vitamins C. The other naturally occurring minerals are potassium, sodium bicarbonate and calcium oxides. These minerals assist in strengthening the enamel and promoting overall oral wellness. Miswak is popular and traditionally used in parts of North Africa, on the Arabian Peninsula as well as in Central and South East Asia. Studies have shown that the use of the Miswak actually reduces the need for modern dental treatment.

 

Miswak Care & Use

  • The Miswak should be moistened with water if it becomes dry and it should should never be stored near the sink or toilet.

  • To use, remove the chewstick from the packaging and trim or chew the bark off one end of the stick approximately ½ of an inch. No toothpaste required.

  • The Miswak has a very distinct taste, it is woody with notes of mustard seed.

  • Chew the exposed end of the twig until the bristles begin to form and brush as you would with a modern toothbrush

  • No toothpaste is necessary and the chewstick will freshen the mouth while brightening the teeth.

  • Lastly, when the bristles look worn, clip them off, chew or peel the bark, and start anew.

 

 

 

SOURCES & Further Reading:

 

  1. http://www.miswakstick.com/files/Miswak-Scientific-Benifits.pdf

  2.  http://www.fao.org/docrep/x5327e/x5327e1j.htm

  3. https://rawinsideout.wordpress.com/2013/10/04/peelu-the-oldest-toothbrush-in-history/

 

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